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Paterson 5th Graders Sexually Assaulted Teacher, Lawsuit Says

Community Charter School of Paterson
Community Charter School of Paterson Photo Credit: Community Charter School of Paterson FACEBOOK

A fifth grade teacher at a Paterson charter school has filed a lawsuit claiming she was sexually harassed by her students.

Denise Kruse says her students at the Community Charter School made thrusting motions with their bodies while standing behind her, asked if she's ever performed oral sex and reached into their pants grabbing their genitals in front of her, said citing the suit.

The teacher also claims some students announced they were sexually aroused, commented on her buttocks and posted videos of her teaching from behind on Snapchat.

Heidi Weintrab -- Kruse's lawyer -- said the school failed to protect the teacher against the harassment.

The trouble began in April 2018 while Kruse was teaching five fifth-graders in a remedial math class, the suit says. Kruse had trouble controlling the five misbehaving students, who then began sexually harassing their teacher, according to the suit.

The following month, Kruse was notified her contract would not be renewed for the 2018-19 school year.

The school issued a statement Thursday:

“The Community Charter School of Paterson is deeply committed to creating a workplace and learning community that is free of harassment or discrimination of any kind, where students and staff alike feel safe, supported and cared for.

“While the school cannot comment on a complaint that has not been served, or publicly discuss an employee’s job performance, one can be assured that the school’s protocols for investigating and addressing sexual harassment, discrimination and retaliation are consistent, fair and thorough,” continued the statement."

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